Living in Portugal: advantages, disadvantages and procedures

Portugal is a country that attracts you? Would you like to live there? Discover the assets of Portugal. Weather, gastronomy, culture… Everything you need to know about this European country. If you decide to settle on Portuguese soil, what disadvantages will you encounter? What should you know about Portugal before moving abroad? We also explain to you the steps to take to live on Portuguese soil, whether for work or to spend your retirement there.

Living in Portugal, benefits


Portugal enjoys a very attractive weather. It is a sunny country where the weather is good for a good part of the year (generally from March to October). In winter, temperatures remain mild, never below 5°C. Living in Portuguese territory, enjoy extremely favorable weather.

Its proximity to France

To return to see your loved ones in France, nothing could be simpler! Portugal is about two hours flight from France.

On the other hand, the Lisbon country has a culture close to that of France. When you arrive there, you will not experience any culture shock.

The walks

In Portugal, there is no shortage of walks. Starting with the capital Lisbon where it is good to walk around. The city has many alleys ideal for strolling. You will also find in Lisbon many terraces and viewpoints to admire the panorama.

On the other hand, the country is rich in history and monuments. Discover cave paintings or Roman remains… There are many cultural visits.

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Cultural life and leisure

It is impossible to get bored when you live in Portugal, and especially in Lisbon. The territory offers a very rich cultural program with a multitude of festivals and concerts. You will find in the European country many ideas for outings.

Outside of Lisbon, discover pretty villages listed as UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Also take advantage of the beaches (more than 800 km of coastline) for swimming and surfing.

The cost of living

In Portugal, the cost of living is low. Buy everyday consumer products or go to a restaurant for a few euros. A good meal in a neighborhood restaurant will not cost you more than ten euros.

On the other hand, the price of real estate is rising, especially in Lisbon. But, in general, acquiring a property in Portugal remains a good deal.

Portuguese taxation

In Portugal, taxation is advantageous with a very low property tax and the absence of inheritance tax.


Taste Portuguese gastronomy. It is known to be tasty. Pastéis de Belém has everything of an institution. It is a kind of pastry flan. The country is also known for its many fish and seafood dishes.

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Living in Portugal, the inconvenients


Portugal is one of the most touristic European countries, especially from April to September. On the streets of the capital or in the rest of the country, instead of locals, you will often meet French vacationers. For the change of scenery, it’s missed!

Noise pollution

If you choose to live in the European capital, be aware that noise can quickly become disabling. Some neighborhoods are known to be very noisy due to the passage of the metro and tram. And other places turn out to be particularly lively at night.

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Medical care

To get treatment in Portugal, you have to be very patient, especially in Lisbon. The country lacks practitioners (generalists and specialists). Sometimes you have to wait several months to get a medical appointment.

Nevertheless, beyond the expectation, the health system in Portugal is considered efficient with a good quality of care in the public.

Getting around town

When traveling to Lisbon, forget about walking. The narrow streets are not made for pedestrians. Better to use public transport, which is clean and efficient.

Taking your car turns out to be a headache in the capital due to too few parking spaces. Otherwise, it is best to take a taxi.

The slowness of the administration

The people of Lisbon cultivate an art of living, hence a certain slowness… From an administrative point of view, do not expect an answer to your mail in the following weeks. The administration lacks responsiveness. The impatient will rather choose another destination.

Work in Lisbon, job and internship

Do you want to try your luck on Portuguese soil? Know that to get a job, it is advisable to speak the language of the country. Nevertheless, some sectors recruit foreigners. Among them, tourism, sales or IT jobs.

Students, are you looking for an internship abroad? Portugal is one of the most attractive countries for students. The universities of the country participate in large numbers in the Erasmus program. As a student, you will easily find an internship, especially in the capital.

The steps to take to live in Lisbon

When you arrive in Portugal, obtain your Tax Identification Number by going to Finances. Europeans must provide an identity document or their passport as well as proof of residence in their country. No need to present an employment contract.
You will be asked for the NIE number in all your administrative procedures but also to find accommodation and open an account in a bank.

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Portugal is an attractive country on paper for both students and active or retired people. However, before settling in Lisbon, you should prepare your expatriation well. Take into account all the subtleties of the territory in order to avoid unpleasant surprises.

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